KISUMU, Kenya May 13- AFC Leopards head coach Ivan Minnaert has called on his players to give a 100 percent effort when they face a possible banana skin assignment against Muhoroni Youth at the Moi Stadium in Kisumu on Saturday afternoon.
Ingwe are winless in their past four assignments and another loss would be detrimental to their hopes of finishing the first leg within the top three.
“I am hoping the players can give in 100 percent because this will be a very tough match. I have watched them play and they are a very experienced team with seven or eight very good players and have the league top scorer with them, so it will not be an easy outing for us,” Minnaert told Capital Sport.
He will probably be encouraged with the performance of his players in the last two matches despite the fact they came short of winning.
They have put up spirited performances but have come short in their final touch and it is something the coach has been working on at the training gound.
The last time Ingwe played at the Moi Stadium in Kisumu, they suffered a 2-0 loss to Western Stima but Minnaert hopes they have better luck this time round. A win would ensure they creep back into the top three but Muhoroni are not willing to let them take the points easily.
James ‘Odijo’ Omondi’s charges are still licking their wounds from a 2-0 loss to champions Gor Mahia last weekend and the youthful tactician has put Ingwe on notice ahead of the tie.
“We expect it tough but I think we don’t want to lose back to back and especially playing at home. We have looked at where we went wrong against Gor and definitely improved,” Omondi told Capital Sport.
After AFC battle with Muhoroni on Saturday at the Moi Stadium arch rivals Gor Mahia will be on the same pitch on Sunday taking on Western Stima.
Gor head coach Jose Marcelo Ferreira has called on his side to maintain the same tempo that has seen them win thrice on the trot though Stima coach Henry Omino has promised them a run for their money.
“We know they are a good side with a good striker who is on form. But we are also formidable at home though we know for Gor this is also like their home. We are ready for the game and the boys are eager to do their best,” Omino opined.
Gor are four points shy of leaders Tusker FC and will want to bag all three in the hope the brewers drop points to bridge the gap.
Tusker will be at home against Sofapaka, a side that has won only twice this season losing the remaining ten. The odd books are hugely against Batoto ba Mungu who have been lethargic this season and staring at a path back to second tier football.
Paul Nkata’s side have lost only once in their last five matches and the Ugandan tactician who is equally under pressure to deliver the Premier League title to Ruaraka will only have three points on his mind.
The last time these two sides met, Sofapaka were still a full strength side and the brewers still managed to get five past them.
Three of the players who were in Sofapaka’s starting team then, goalkeeper David Okello, right back Collins Shivachi and midfielder Anthony Ndolo will be on the opposite side this time, having signed for Tusker at the beginning of the season.
At the Mbaraki Stadium in Mombasa, second placed Mathare United come up against hosts Bandari who are in a slump of their own. Despite signing heavily in January, Twahir Muhiddin’s side has not won in seven matches and dropped to tenth on the standings.
Francis Kimanzi’s Mathare have drawn three consecutive matches and head coach Francis Kimanzi’s hunger for a win will spur his side on.